I’m the sort of person who remembers dates, especially year anniversaries of dates. I remember the date of my high school graduation, the date of my first date with Ryan, and the date I found out I was pregnant with Grayson.
One year ago today, December 30, 2010, is a date I will always remember. One year ago today my life and my family’s future changed significantly, although we had no idea at the time how significantly.
Grayson was 3 months old and had his first cold. He was coughing and congested, so I took him to the doctor. It was, of course, right before New Years and I wanted to make sure everything checked out before the holiday. He was given a prescription for his inhaler and we were told to use the bulb syringe, humidifier and saline drops until it cleared up.
Right as Dr. D and I were wrapping up our conversation, I hesitated, debating whether or not to even say anything. I remember my exact words.
“I know I’m probably being a paranoid new mom, but I wanted to ask you about a few things.”
I went on to tell her I’d noticed that Grayson wasn’t tracking with his eyes, that I sometimes noticed some strange movements of his eyes, and he had only about a week before started smiling.
Well, it turns out I wasn’t being a paranoid new mom. Not at all. In the last 365 days I’ve gone from being a new mom just trying to adjust to having a typical newborn to adjusting to life with a special needs kid with a list of symptoms and a team of doctors larger than I can count on both hands.
December 30, 2010. I was 3 months into my flight to Italy when the flight attendant softly whispered that the plane was being rerouted to Holland*, a beautiful country with tulips and little boys in wooden shoes.
My 2011, my new life, started a year ago today. 2011 has definitely been the hardest year of my life, but also the best. I’ve never been more tired, scared, and uncertain of the future, but I’ve also never felt more loved. I’ve watched my baby boy struggle to meet physical milestones and battle serious health issues, but I’ve also watched him learn to laugh, give kisses, and melt hearts wherever he goes.
I enter into 2012 with great uncertainty, but also great hope and anticipation. I pray that 2012 will be a year of clarity, but it could leave questions unanswered, and may bring a crop of new questions. What exactly is going on in Grayson’s little body? What does his future hold? Will he ever walk? Will we be able to have more children? are all questions I hope to have answered in 2012.
I’m not making any resolutions this year. 2011 taught me life happens the way it happens despite other plans. But I will live 2012 so that I have no regrets a year from now. I will love my family, laugh with my friends, and celebrate Grayson for what he can do, not what he can’t. I will continue to fight for my son so that he has the best care possible, and try not to worry too much about medical bills and other things I can’t control.
Despite everything, it’s been a good year. The best year.
*You can read about Holland and Italy here.